When developed, the array will allow investigators to rapidly determine the particular SNPs present in a citrus variety or hybrid. The thousands of SNPs detected with this array will then be related to the traits displayed by the various individuals studied.
"We will use this tool to study essentially all trees in our Citrus Variety Collection and several large citrus families in which individuals vary for traits of economic importance," said Roose, the chair of the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences. "We will then correlate the particular SNPs carried by an individual to measured traits such as disease resistance and fruit quality."
Specifically, the team of researchers, including graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, will first develop sequences for a large and diverse set of citrus varieties. They will then analyze all available sequence data to identify SNPs and select a subset of SNPs to be used on the array. The SNP array will be manufactured by a commercial company. Next, they will apply the assay to the Citrus Variety Collection, breeding populations used for mapping disease resistance and tolerance, and populations already selected for fruit quality traits.
"A valuable outcome of this project will be a comprehensive understanding of relationships among citrus varieties and how these relate to economically valuable characters," Roose said.
UC Riverside has a long tradition in citrus research, with citrus production and development of new varieties being a major focus. Used extensively to solve citrus disease problems and improve commercial varieties, the university's
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University of California - Riverside